First Call: Jon Gruden was ready to give up 2nd-round pick for Antonio Brown |
Breakfast With Benz

First Call: Jon Gruden was ready to give up 2nd-round pick for Antonio Brown

Tim Benz
Oakland Raiders head coach Jon Gruden watches as players stretch during OTAs at team headquarters in Alameda, Calif., Tuesday, May 28, 2019.

In “First Call” Thursday, the Steelers may have been able to do better in the Antonio Brown trade. A WPIAL star is climbing toward the majors. Ryan Reaves dabbles in comedy.

How it could’ve gone

Here’s an item we’ve buried this week.

It turns out the Steelers may have been able to get that second-round pick from Oakland in exchange for Antonio Brown that I was targeting after all.

Instead they got a third rounder and a fifth rounder.

Based on these comments from Jon Gruden to Peter King in “Football Morning in America” this week, he was willing to give up a second rounder for A.B. the instant vice president and cap guru Omar Khan called from the Steelers offices.

“I call (Raiders general manager) Mike (Mayock) and I said, ‘Why don’t we just give the Steelers the second and get this guy?’ Mike says, ‘That’s a little rich still. Let me talk to (Steelers GM) Kevin Colbert,’ ” Gruden said. “Now he talks to Kevin Colbert and he says, ‘I think we can get him for a three and a five.’ I said, ‘Get the hell outta here!’ ”

Funny. I think I said exactly the same thing when I saw the trade announced for a third- and a fifth-rounder, too.

“Get the hell outta here!”

Since the Steelers traded their own second-round pick to get Devin Bush, it sure would’ve been nice to have a selection in the second round.

The Steelers have said they were content with the return for Brown. And the spin on draft day was that they wouldn’t have been comfortable trading their second-rounder to get Bush unless they had the two Oakland picks.

On top of that, they’ve done a great job talking Diontae Johnson into the wide receiver they wanted all along, anyway, even if they had picked in the second round.

Personally, I would’ve been happier with a second-rounder rather than Johnson and Zach Gentry.

That may not come out

You never want to leave a game with a clean uniform.

Someone needs to tell Los Angeles first baseman Matt Beaty this doesn’t count, though.

Reds manager David Bell probably thinks someone threw that ketchup at him on purpose.

McKay magic

Blackhawk product Brendan McKay was excellent in his Triple-A debut.

The former first-round draft choice struck out four and walked none in five shutout innings Tuesday for the Durham Bulls. They beat Louisville, 18-3.

The Rays drafted McKay fourth overall in the 2017 draft. As a senior at Blackhawk, tossed 72 1/3 consecutive scoreless innings.

At Louisville, McKay was named the nation’s top college player in 2017 and was picked No. 4 overall in the 2017 MLB Draft.

Sir Laughs-a-lot

Vegas Golden Knights enforcer Ryan Reaves got dressed up as an actual Golden Knight to scare his teammates.

The former Penguin committed to the bit.

Of course, I kept waiting for the ultimate payoff to be Marc-Andre Fleury jumping out from behind a corner to scare Reaves in retaliation.

Sadly, that never happened.

Brotherly love

Give Jay Gruden credit for honesty, candor and, well, accuracy.

The Redskins coach was asked about the prospect of “Hard Knocks” covering his team’s training camp.

So what did he do? He endorsed the idea. But for his brother.

Yeah. Like the rest of us, Jay Gruden says HBO should take the training camp documentary to Jon Gruden’s camp instead.

No truer words have been spoken.

One thing, though: HBO wouldn’t be allowed to cover the Redskins in 2020 if Jay Gruden gets fired because they’d have a first-year head coach as a replacement. That’s a provision preventing a team from being covered.

But that’s probably not the route Gruden wants to go to spare the organization this hassle.

Tim Benz is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tim at [email protected] or via Twitter. All tweets could be reposted. All emails are subject to publication unless specified otherwise.

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